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Mastering the Art of Public Speaking for Executives

Saturday, May 20, 2023

Being a senior leader means communicating with various groups of people, from your employees and peers to your board members and customers. Your public speaking skills can make a big difference in achieving your goals and leading your organization.

But public speaking is not something that comes naturally to everyone. It can be hard to deal with anxiety, create a powerful message, and connect with your audience.

In this article, I will give you five tips that can help you boost your public speaking skills as a senior executive. These tips will help you speak with more authority, clarity, and impact, no matter who you’re talking to or what you’re talking about.

Tip 1. Understand Your Role as a Public Speaker

Understanding your role as a public speaker is essential for delivering a successful and impactful message. As an executive, you have a unique perspective on the issues and challenges facing your organization.

By understanding your role as a public speaker, you will be better equipped to decide on the purpose of your communication piece, whether it is a presentation, speech, or discussion. This clarity of purpose will guide you in crafting a message that is both relevant and impactful for your audience.

Your goal is to inspire action, whether that is to convince your team to adopt a new strategy, to persuade your board to approve a new initiative, or to rally external stakeholders around your company's vision.

By keeping your role in mind and understanding the problem you solve for your organization, you will be able to deliver your message with greater confidence and effectiveness. You will know what you want to achieve and will be better equipped to achieve it through your communication. This will lead to greater trust and credibility, and ultimately to better outcomes for you and your organization.

Tip 2. Understand Your Audience As Peers

It's critical to understand your audience as peers to establish equitable relationships and to tailor your message accordingly. This can help build trust and make the audience feel valued. When preparing for a presentation or speech, take the time to research and understand your audience, their interests, and their perspectives. Consider what they already know about the topic and what they need to know. This will enable you to create a message that resonates with your audience and that they can relate to.

To further tailor your message, adjust your language, tone, and delivery style based on your audience's preferences. For example, if you're speaking to a group of technical experts, you may want to use more technical language and go into greater detail. On the other hand, if you're speaking to a non-technical audience, you'll want to simplify your language and focus on the big picture.

Ultimately, by understanding your audience as peers and tailoring your message to them, you'll be able to better engage them, persuade them, and ultimately achieve your desired outcome.

Tip 3. Unveil Your Content as Principles

It is essential to understand that your audience of executives and stakeholders are primarily interested in strategic direction rather than tactical details. This means they value a focus on delivering the key principles that underpin your strategy, rather than getting bogged down in specifics. By doing so, you can better equip your audience with the necessary tools to help them achieve success.

Principles help you to establish a clear and coherent approach to the challenges at hand, and by sharing them with your audience, you can provide a framework for decision-making that will help guide them in the right direction.

It's also important to remember that tactics are only effective when they are grounded in strategy. Therefore, it's vital that you take the time to understand the principles behind your strategy before attempting to execute on any tactics. Without this foundational knowledge, you run the risk of making costly mistakes that could set your organization back.

By unveiling your content as principles, you can ensure that your audience has a clear understanding of the "why" behind your strategy, which will ultimately lead to better decision-making and improved outcomes.

Tip 4. Unite Your Intention With Their Attention

As a senior executive, you have a clear intention behind your message, whether it is to persuade, inform, or motivate. However, in today's fast-paced and ever-distracting world, competing for your audience's attention can be a daunting task.

To be a successful change agent, you must understand that people pay attention to things that are important to them; in other words, things that align with their values. Therefore, the key to uniting your intention with their attention is to link your message to what matters most to them.

For instance, if you are pitching a new product to potential clients, try to understand their priorities or values hierarchy, and then frame your message around how your product can address those issues and help them achieve their goals. By doing so, you will create an emotional connection with your audience, raise their desire for your solution, and ultimately drive them to take action.

Tip 5. Uncover Your Value

When speaking for the purpose of offering a solution or recommendation, it is vital to understand that your ability to get buy-in from your audience will depend on how well you can communicate the value of your offer to them.

This means understanding their needs, pain points, and goals, and showing how your message can provide the solution they are looking for. When you can clearly articulate the value of your message to your audience, you not only increase the likelihood of getting their buy-in, but also of establishing a stronger connection with them.

This connection is important for building trust and credibility as a leader, and for fostering stronger relationships with your stakeholders. So, when preparing for your next speech or presentation, take the time to think about what your audience values most and how your message can provide the solution they are looking for.

As a senior executive, your ability to communicate effectively is crucial to your success and the success of your organization. By understanding your role as a public speaker and tailoring your message to your audience, you can ensure that your message is received with clarity and impact. Unveiling your content as principles and linking your intention with the values of your audience will further enhance the effectiveness of your communication.

And finally, by uncovering the value of your offer and communicating it clearly, you can increase your chances of success in persuading and activating your stakeholders. Remember, the ability to communicate effectively is not something that can be developed overnight, but by practicing these tips and continuing to refine your skills, you can become a confident and persuasive public speaker, from the boardroom to the conference stage.

Moving from knowledge gathering to knowledge application is the next step in the reading process. To learn how to put these principles into practice, join me in my executive coaching program where I'll show you how to develop your career and self. This is a results-oriented program for growth-oriented executives who want to improve their skills to fulfill their career goals. The program emphasizes mastering your mind, developing deeper insights, improving your communication skills, and inspiring your career development.

Interested in working with me to achieve your career goals? Apply HERE.

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© Mastery Insights Inc. All Rights Reserved